BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Congressman Chris Collins (R-Clarence) stood by his remarks on CNN Tuesday morning that no investigation is needed following the resignation of President Donald Trump's National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.
Collins was the first member of Congress to endorse Trump for President, and he's been a staunch supporter.
He drew criticism on social media and in online articles after his appearance on CNN's "New Day." Anchor Chris Cuomo pressed the Congressman to explain why we should "move on from here".
"Congressman, it's Valentine's Day, and for the love of truth, you cannot say that you just want to move on," Cuomo said to Collins, asking if it would be the same under a President Barack Obama or President Hillary Clinton.
"How is anybody supposed to hear that and say, yea Collins is being a fair broker on this," Cuomo asked. Collins responded, "Well because that is actually the world I live in."
Other Republicans in the U.S. House and Senate disagreed with Rep. Collins and called for further probes into Flynn's actions.
Sen. Roy Blunt, a Republican member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, called for an "exhaustive investigation" into connections between Russia and the Trump administration.
Sen. Mitch McConnell, the G.O.P. leader, said it's "highly likely" the Senate Intelligence Committee will look into Flynn's discussions with the Russian ambassador.
2 On Your Side reached out to Collins' office to see if he stood by his position that no investigation is needed. His spokesperson sent the following statement:
“I believe General Flynn’s resignation addresses the issue at the heart of this situation: whether or not the president and vice president can trust their key advisors. Calls to launch additional investigations may make great political theatre, but do not allow us to address the real issues Americans care about like job creation, health care and tax reform.”
Republicans uniformly dismissed calls for an "independent" probe into the matter, with most insisting Congressional committees could handle the investigations.
Predictably, Democrats were much more enthusiastic in their calls for new probes.
Sen. Charles Schumer of New York, who is the leader of Senate Democrats, wants an independent criminal investigation, and he insisted new Attorney General Jeff Sessions must recuse himself.
"Any attempt to lie or mislead must be countered with the full force of the law," Schumer said Tuesday afternoon in Washington.
Congressman Brian Higgins (D-Buffalo) sent the following statement to 2 On Your Side:
"The critical lapse of judgement shown by Flynn in his purported dealings with the Russian Ambassador before his appointment as National Security Advisor, his lack of disclosure of those dealings, the apparent communication from the Department of Justice to the White House of those concerns, and the White House's apparent lack of immediate action on that information demonstrates the clear need to investigate. This is not about partisan politics. This is about the potential influence of a foreign power at the highest levels of our government and the rightful role of Congress to hold the Executive Branch accountable. It should be taken seriously and merits review to ascertain if related threats to our national security exist."